Marketing Tactics to Reach LOHAS Food and Beverage Consumers
The LOHAS (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability) market today represents a more than $290 billion dollar opportunity for brands. LOHAS food and beverage consumers are actively seeking out companies that align with their values and fit within their expectations of health and sustainability. Building a brand that meets those expectations is the first step. But after your specialty food or craft beverage brand has been established, the challenge becomes how you reach those “perfect fit” customers without wasting dollars on bottom line shoppers who are buying solely on price?
Below we outline three highly targeted and cost effective marketing tactics to reach LOHAS food and beverage consumers.
Social Media Promotion
Whether you use social media for customer engagement or not (hint: you should be) – social media advertising is an incredibly efficient way to reach LOHAS consumers. Facebook in particular (as well as Instagram, which is owned by Facebook) offers unmatched targeting capabilities – allowing you to narrow your audience not only using demographics (age, gender, location) but also using psychographics (attitudes, interests, opinions, etc.). Using Facebook’s Ad Manager program, you can easily create an ad (or boost a post already on your business page) and place it into the newsfeed of, for example, only users who are vegetarian, support animal rights, eat organic, like tofu, are democrats, have 2 or more children, and make over $100,000 a year. Seriously. You can be that specific. You can actually be even more specific, targeting only certain neighborhoods or users living within a specified distance from one of your retailers. You can also import email lists and target the newsfeeds of just those users as well, a great way to remind and engage with current customers. Most social media advertising platforms also allow you to pay either per impression or per click, ensuring you get the absolute most out of every dollar, based on your specific marketing goal.
Back in the day, brands seeking increased awareness turned to TV and radio to get their message out. It worked. The only problem was that for every household they reached that fit their target audience, they reached thousands that weren’t even close. They were spending big bucks to reach a bunch of people, but only a handful they cared about. This was an even bigger problem for niche brands, or those seeking to reach more specific audiences, such as the LOHAS food and beverage market. Programmatic advertising is the perfect solution, especially in today’s world, with both broadcast and cable TV viewership sharply declining, particularly among millennials. Programmatic advertising allows brands to purchase online ad inventory across the web – everything from banner ads to instream videos to streaming TV spots. The benefit of this digital approach is the ability to target the audience being shown the ads. Instead of a buying a broadcast spot that every viewer in a certain geography is forced to watch, digital programmatic buying allows brands to show their ads only to viewers that meet certain specifications such as having visited the brand’s website in the past, or falling into a demographic or psychographic target (like LOHAS). Brands can also easily select from a wide array of inventory, narrowing to certain types of websites (news websites vs. social networks, for example) or selecting specific websites on which they would like their ads to appear. This is a great opportunity for LOHAS food and beverage brands that can identify certain websites or networks that their target audience visits frequently. Other benefits of programmatic advertising include its flexibility and nimbleness – you can pause, cancel or change out ads on the hour – as well as the ability to pay only for ads that are actually watched. If someone hits skip before the first few seconds are up (specific time frames vary based on ad placement), you don’t get charged a dime.
If traditional advertising isn’t a great fit for your brand, or your target audience hasn’t been receptive to it, influencer marketing can be a great solution. Influencer marketing involves reaching out to digital and “real life” influencers who are well-aligned with your target audience. For example, if you sell an organic juices for kids, reaching out to LOHAS mom bloggers would be a perfect fit. The major benefit of working with influencers is that they are trusted by their audience. Listening to an ad for an organic juice company might entice some people – but hearing their favorite mom food and beverage blogger endorse it is what really convinces them to get on board.
The toughest part of influencer marketing is identifying the right influencers. To start your search, begin with your target audience, and ask them where they get purchase advice. Do they follow certain bloggers, listen to specific podcasts, or belong to a particular social network? Once you’ve identified the influencers (people who influence the purchase decisions for your target audience members) reach out to those influencers and propose a partnership. Often partnerships are paid (i.e. brands provide financial compensation to the influencer in exchange for product promotion) while others are based on trade – free product in exchange for mentions and brand promotion. Other ways of engaging influencers include inviting them to your headquarters to see your product in action, or sponsored events in which likeminded influencers get together to mingle with each other, as well as your company representatives. Learn more about how to build a successful influencer campaign here.
What are your most successful strategies for reaching food and beverage consumers? Share with us on Facebook!
Ethos is a multiplatform branding agency that develops and executes integrated marketing campaigns across multiple channels for companies inside and outside of Maine.
At Ethos, we believe that the most effective way to set a company’s marketing course is by finding its core truth – its ethos. We know that once we discover and communicate that core truth, we can truly make a difference for each client’s unique marketing and business objectives.
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